This new house on a forested west-sloping 7-acre site was designed for a semi-retired couple. The wife wanted a place to make art, the husband a shop, and they both wanted plenty of sleeping places for visiting grandchildren. Appreciating the Oregon climate, they requested a large covered outdoor space for relaxing and grilling.
A unique aspect of this house is that I designed it only to the schematic level, handing off completion of construction documents to a draftsman with whom I had worked previously. To insure the integrity of the design, I developed sections and framing plans at ¼-inch scale and sketched some critical details, but I did not draft anything. I remained a part of the team as a consultant, offering advice at critical junctures through design development and construction. With this strategy, the clients profited from my most critical early design decisions but ended up paying only a fraction the cost of full architectural services. I believe this is a viable business model for architects and a practical way to exploit their unique training and experience at a wholesale scale. I plan to explore the idea further.
The house is elongated on the east-west axis, which allowed for a basement level at the west end. The basement stair was extended upward as well to make a third-level studio above. The garage responds to an existing access road, making the vehicular connection short and direct. The garage is expanded slightly, allowing it to double as a shop with workbenches and storage at the edges. A space between the garage and house was developed into a large, covered, south-facing porch with built-in grill/fireplace.